2:00 PM ET, January 2, 2010
NEWARK, N.J. -- Geno Auriemma has a concern most coaches would love to have: trying to keep No. 1 Connecticut from winning by too many points.His Huskies were at it again Saturday, routing Seton Hall 91-24 for their biggest margin of victory over a Big East opponent in seven years. UConn led by 40 at the half, and Auriemma pulled his starters early in the second half."These games are never easy to play in or coach," Auriemma said. "You have to concentrate that it's done right. You never want to see scores like today. It's not good for anyone. Not good for us or them. It's difficult to be in that situation."Tina Charles scored 19 points and Kalana Greene added 16 to help UConn win its 51st straight game. The Huskies have won every game during their streak by at least double digits and many by 30 or more points.Sometimes there's nothing Auriemma can do about the final margin. The bench scored 37 points, including Meghan Gardler's career-high 16 points."You got guys off the bench who want to play well," Auriemma said. "The other team is struggling to put points on the board and if you're not careful it becomes kind of ragged."The 51 straight victories is third-longest in Division I women's basketball history. UConn trails only its school record of 70 from 2001 to 2003 and Louisiana Tech's 54 from 1980 to 1982.Maya Moore added 14 for the Huskies, who got the 800th win in school history.It didn't take them long to turn this contest into another rout.After it was tied at 2, the Huskies scored 17 straight points while Seton Hall (8-6) committed eight turnovers during its drought. Greene had nine points during the spurt, including a nifty three-point play that made it 17-2.Ebonie Williams finally ended the Pirates' 6:34 scoreless stretch with a 3-pointer that made it 19-5. UConn went on a 15-2 run in the next 6 minutes.By the time Jacquie Fernandes hit a 3-pointer to end the half, the Huskies led 52-12, converting 20 Seton Hall turnovers into 27 points. Greene and Charles each had 14 points at the half, both individually outscoring the Pirates, who were just 5 for 24 from the field by the intermission."We're confident in our defense," Greene said. "We don't know if it's the other team or us, but we like to force teams to do things they don't like to do."When the starters left for good early in the second half, UConn's lead had ballooned to 54 points. The victory was the Huskies' first 60-point win over a conference opponent since a 106-41 victory over Providence in 2002.Williams scored nine to lead Seton Hall, which couldn't string together consecutive baskets the entire game. The Pirates shot just 17 percent from the field and finished with 28 turnovers."We've had trouble scoring all year," Seton Hall coach Phyllis Mangina said. "If you can't make baskets against this team you have no opportunity. You can't turn the ball over 28 times. We weren't making any baskets and they are very good."The victory was UConn's 124th straight against a non-ranked opponent. It was also the Huskies' 26th straight win against Seton Hall since Jan. 5, 1994. That was the only time the Pirates have beaten the Huskies in the last 42 meetings."At the end of the day you talk to your players about having a great challenge," Mangina said. "Every kid wants to play against a team like Connecticut, we have nothing to lose. They are supposed to beat everyone they play. We were really disappointed how we played."
Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press
Team Stat Comparison
|FG Made-Attempted||38-67 (.567)||9-52 (.173)|
|3P Made-Attempted||6-18 (.333)||4-21 (.190)|
|FT Made-Attempted||9-10 (.900)||2-3 (.667)|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||8 (0/0)||16 (0/0)|